Shhh. The Trees are conspiring against me.

That’s right, you heard me.  The trees are out to get me.  Don’t laugh at me, it’s true and I have proof.  What I can’t figure out is why?  I’m a huge supporter of trees though I don’t consider myself a true tree hugger.  Because let’s face it, trees are hard, covered with bark and frankly, not that much fun to hug. 

Now a large percentage of the last five generations of my very large family have made a living by logging, either directly or indirectly, but not me.  Hell, one day working in a sawmill as a teenager was more than enough to convince me that I wanted no part of it, short term or long.  And yes, I did take part in my Grandpa’s vendetta against dogwoods — I think it was religiously motivated, but being 9 years old, didn’t really care.  All I knew was I was going to get a nickel for every dogwood my brother and I chopped down and comic books only cost a quarter.  So five chopped dogwoods equaled a new comic book.  What 9 year old could turn that down?

But the fact remains that I have been assaulted by trees on each of the last two weekends.  First it was a large cottonwood jumping in front of my truck as I turned around, resulting in my backing into it with a bone jarring *thump*.  I know what you’re thinking: trees can’t move and certainly not that fast.  Well they can, as this one demonstrated and cottonwoods in particular are very nimble for their size.  Fortunately, I hit the tree with my trailer hitch, so other than having the fillings in my teeth rattled and a mild case of whiplash, neither I nor my truck are any the worse for wear.  The cottonwood also appeared to be unhurt though it appeared rather disappointed in not causing more damage.

Last weekend, things escalated.  I was trying to get down to a local lake (more on that in a future post) by negotiating a 90° turn through a very tight space between a large black oak and the exposed root mass of a downed tree.  The aforementioned black oak, taking advantage of that fact that I neglected to account for the fact that my canoe rack was wider than the truck by almost a foot, leaned out and grabbed hold of the the rack, with predictable results.

Remember, that’s no sissy aluminum rack, no.  It’s made of 1” angle iron, welded and braced.  So the tree got in a pretty good shot to crumple it that much.  It could have been worse — the post pockets on the right side of the bed were *ahem* enlarged, but otherwise the truck itself was undamaged.  I don’t think I can straighten out that runner though, so I’m going to have to cut it off and weld a new one in its place.  As for the tree, it “suffered” a small scuff mark that didn’t go all the way through the bark.  It only served to enhance the sneering, malignant glare the tree was giving me.  I was going to take a photo of the tree, but the thought that it might use the opportunity to drop a branch on my head put the kibosh that notion.  I had to pass the tree on the way back, but I was ready for it this time and escaped without further incident.  I tried to file a complaint against the tree, but the park ranger I spoke with seemed more concerned that I might need medical attention.  He, obviously, is a part of the conspiracy.

I know the trees are thinking they’ll finish me off this weekend.  But I’ve got news for them: I’m going to stay in the house and watch the Olympics!  Go USA!!!


Winking smile

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